THE FINAL FRONTIER
AS anyone who follows me on social media will now know I have been lucky enough to make the final of The People’s Book Prize which will take place in London’s mythical Stationers’ Hall at the end of May, 2017.
For me this is a moment of real satisfaction as it has come at the second time of asking after my second novel ‘The Hurting’ was nominated in the autumn collection back in 2012 but failed to make the final.
Clearly there are lots of people I owe a special vote of thanks to in helping me get there, not least of all Andy & Caroline at my publishers McNidder&Grace, who have worked tirelessly behind the scenes to help promote The Shift and shown real belief in my work.
Secondly to WH Smith and particular their Central Scotland stores director Garry Torrance, who gave me the platform in my home city of Stirling and then on successive Scottish signing tours to engage with the great Scottish reading public and increase the profile of The Shift to such a level that I will now be able to fulfil a long held ambition of mine, which is to meet the literary colossus that is Frederick Forsyth CBE when he hosts the final.
But most of all I must also thank everyone who took the time to vote for me, you have made an old man very happy!!
Euphoric as I may have been yesterday the elation of the moment had well and truly worn off when I returned to my writing desk at 0604am this morning to start work on the final five chapters of The Blood Acre, the follow up to The Shift, which is due out April/May 2017!
I am really pleased with the way the first draft MS has evolved, and consider that with 89,000 words written, some of the sequences in The Blood Acre are on a level higher than I have written before.
Time will tell if you agree with me, but I can say that my ‘expert reader’ Mr Les Truman, very much agrees with me on that as I head into the final furlong….good job there are no fences left to jump then!
Looking ahead to December I am now entering the most ambitious and challenging month of my writing career with seven book signings in just 24 days of the final month of the year.
That all starts in WH Smith St Nicholas Centre, Aberdeen tomorrow at 11am with a 12pm start at Perth WH Smith on Sunday to follow and ends back at Stirling WH Smith on Christmas Eve with an 11am start.
Rest assured I will be tweeting and Facebooking on my adventures spanning the length and breadth of Scotland as Thoroughgood and I hit the road.
Hope to see you out there!